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Watson College Milestone: 20-Year Anniversary of PDS

Monday, November 18, 2013

20-Year Anniversary of PDS

This December marks the 20th anniversary of the Watson College of Education Professional Development System (PDS) Partnership. PDS was created in response to feedback from schools that education majors need more authentic field experiences to learn the connection between theory and practice before becoming a teacher. 

The original concept, introduced in 1990 with the Consortium for the Advancement of Public Education (CAPE) and the Model Clinical Teacher Program, was to enhance teacher preparation by partnering with in-service teachers to provide internship opportunities for students. The college advanced this concept in 1993 with the official launch of the PDS partnership.

Today, WCE’s PDS partners with 12 districts, 145 schools and more than 2,200 teachers in Southeastern North Carolina, and the partnership serves as a model for the nation. The mission has grown to include university-school collaboration with a goal of enhancing student learning by enhancing the quality of teaching and school leadership in the region. Providing classroom opportunities for pre-service teachers remains a priority, and Watson College education majors now spend an estimated 300-600 hours in partnership schools gaining hands-on field experience prior to graduation. 
For more information visit www.uncw.edu/ed/pds/